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Luis Felix & Ryan Sanders Pre-Fight Interviews

By: Matthew Pearlman


CES 32 is a stacked card. MMA Veteran and current CES MMA Champion, Luis Felix, was originally set to fight UFC Veteran Waylon Lowe in a title bout. However, Lowe had to pull out of the fight. Replacing him will be Bellator Veteran, Ryan Sanders. I caught up with both fighters before their main event fight.


Matthew: Where does a win put you?

Luis: I’m hoping it puts me in the UFC, man. That’s definitely the goal. Every fight we do from here on out is to get myself in the UFC. I have to come out, be aggressive, win this fight in dominant, exciting fashion, and do whatever it takes to get myself to the UFC.


Ryan: With a win, I think it puts me as one of the top guys at 155 in New England. After I beat Luis, I assume he’ll want a rematch almost immediately because he was getting ready for a wrestler who was 5-foot-7, 5-foot-8 instead of fighting me -- a tall, lanky, well-rounded fighter. I’m sure he’ll have a few excuses about how he wasn’t prepared and stuff like that. Hopefully it puts me in the top 1 or 2 in New England, and hopefully it opens up some more doors for CES, who I would like to continue fighting for. I’d like to fight the toughest guys in New England, in the States and eventually in the world. This is a step in the right direction.


Matthew: How does this fight end?

Luis: I’m going to finish it, one way or the other before it goes all three rounds. This fight isn’t going to a decision.


Ryan: With a submission. I’m not sure which one. I’m more than happy to strike. But he’s going to make a mistake and I’m going to catch him in a choke or an armbar or a triangle choke. I’m very comfortable on the ground. With me being more comfortable standing up, I’ll catch him with something. He’ll get caught.


Matthew: What will your fans see?

Luis: They’re going to see an exciting fight. Ryan is a guy who brings it, and I’m not the kind of guy to back away from that, either. This is going to be an interesting fight for the fans, and it’s going to be a really exciting fight, too. The fans will definitely enjoy it.


Ryan: They’ll see an ever-improving Ryan Sanders. I’m in the gym all the time and I’m getting better every day. I’m learning new things always and I’m always implementing new things. Every time I get out there, I’m getting better and that’s what you’ve got to be doing in this game. I’ll show it again on Friday.


Matthew: How does it feel to be main event?

Luis: As a fighter, this is what you fight for. There are a lot of good fights on this card, but the main event is what everyone is looking forward to. I’m looking forward to closing it out with a bang, again. I love the pressure of being in the main event. That’s what drives me. Regardless of the opponent, it’s the same result, the same pressure, and I love it. There’s nowhere else I’d rather fight on the card than in the main event.


Ryan: It’s awesome. It’s crazy to think this is the main event fight, yet there’s a title fight on the card. I know I’m being brought in as a late replacement, but I’m very excited to be brought in to fight on the main event. Very excited!


Matthew: If you could say a couple of words to each other, what would you say?

Luis: I’d thank him for taking the fight. Much respect for that; not everyone would take a fight on such short notice. I’ve got nothing but respect for him for that. Let’s go out there and have some fun. Let’s put on a show, enjoy it, and give fans something to talk about and remember.


Ryan: I’d say let’s put on a performance. Let’s put on a show, man. Let’s put on a fight that people will be talking about for the rest of the year, even though it’s January. Let’s do this!


Matthew: How have you been preparing for this fight?

Luis: I’ve been doing my wrestling at Johnson and Wales University, so I have to give them a big thank you. I’ve also been at Sityodtong up in Boston training with Kru Mark DellaGrotte. Those guys have taken me in as one of their own, and I’m very grateful for that. I’m excited about working with Mark, and I’ve been doing great work with my coaches Victor Fagnant, Greg Rebello, and Jorge Rivera. That’s the team. We’ve put in some good work and now it’s time for us to go showcase what we’ve been plugging away at for so long. Now is the fun part!


Ryan: I had a fight scheduled. I was in camp and getting ready for that, but this fell in my lap. I’ve more or less just been tightening up the combos I’m looking to use, my takedown defense, and getting my weight right. I’m not doing anything too crazy. I really don’t have too much of a game plan. I’m just going to go in and have fun. You can’t take fighting too seriously because if you do that, you start to hate it.


Who do you have winning this fight?